We had the good fortune of connecting with Deepa Subramanian, Art Gallerist and Curator and we have shared our conversation below:

Hi Deepa, why did you decide to pursue a creative path?
Well, creativity is the larger part of me although I wandered afar before I got back to where my heart belonged. It is practically impossible for everyone to pursue a career which they love from the start. The first set of cards that was dealt to me did not have a creative aspect to it. But I had to go through it and finally got to where I wanted to be only after a decade or so. But the good part was that I gained a corporate experience which I could use in the business of running an art gallery. It all started when I had my first show of murals in June 2009 in India.. That’s when I decided to transform the space I had in a prime location in Bangalore to an art gallery. The gallery was on the 11th floor of a landmark building in the heart of the city of Bangalore with a spectacular view of the city. People loved it and the gallery has seen some great shows of significant contemporary artists.

Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
I was once reading a book titled “the 100$ start-up” when a close friend of mine pointed out “you don’t need to read it because you are actually living it”!!
Well, it did set me thinking on how I became a “solopreneur” and the path that it led me to.. I was in the corporate world for nearly 6 years but I realized I was a misfit from day one!! One fine morning in 2001, I decided to quit and set out on my own path. With a minimum bank balance and the years of experience I gained from the corporate world, I co-founded a business in Supply Chain Management of Pharmaceutical chemicals. The business was not capital intensive and I thought I had nothing to lose and everything to gain. That’s how I became an accidental entrepreneur who stumbled onto the path of entrepreneurship purely out of necessity. To my greatest joy, I discovered that my efficiency was at its greatest when I was doing any job “solo” without any directions from anyone.

“Chemicals” was certainly not my passion. It was new to me. I got into the inroads through a manufacturing company who in fact offered me a job initially. However I picked up the thread and decided to develop it as my own business venture. I applied the marketing expertise that I acquired from my corporate experience. It worked and in fact it worked better because I used my own creativity in building the business in my own way. It drew me more and more into a strangely thrilling pursuit of freedom along with independence and wealth.
But more importantly, I learnt a lot of things about myself, the way I think and the way I perceive things. The end result never bothered me. I was more interested in the means to the end. I found that very invigorating.
I founded “Galerie De’Arts” my second venture in 2009. I didn’t really think much before I started this as “creativity” was my core. Initially, Initially I even disregarded the commercial aspect of it because I felt compelled to channelize my energy more into “art”. But as I progressed, I was keen to explore whether there is a convergence in some part of my passion which people might be willing to pay attention to or pay a price for and I started working towards converting “passion into profit”. This helped me discover aspects of my personal creativity that I never knew would possibly exist in me. I discovered that my passion had the potential of being monetized and that greatly helped me restructure my lifestyle to experience a greater freedom and fulfillment. Trust me, entrepreneurship can happen without venture capital, funding rounds, an Mba or a strong technology background. “Freedom is what you are looking for. Value is how to achieve it.”

What I would like to convey through my story is that “when any job is done with passion, it has a certain yield. When you build on that yield consistently with the same passion, it becomes a success”. What I am grateful about is the fact that I am able to pursue art with the same passion in the US post my relocation. I represent the city of Santa Monica as one of the Art Commissioners and am also a board member of the Public Arts Commission, City of Santa Monica.
Since my move to LA, I have been building my roster of LA artists and collaborating and curating independently. My last curation was an exhibit titled “Intersections” by Mike Saijo, a noted LA based artist. The exhibit created a powerful narrative of the Japanese Immigrants in the country by creating a meticulous juxtaposition of texts and imagery and at the same time drawing parallels of ” history and the now”.

Earlier this year, I curated and exhibited at the Palm Springs Modernism Art & Design Show where I showed the works of seven LA based artists and three Indian contemporary artists. In 2021, I had a small format show of around 100 works of Indian contemporary artists in Bergamot Station, a popular arts district in Santa Monica. All the shows had a phenomenal response and I have a few projects in the pipeline for the year. My goal is to bring in more contemporary Indian artists to LA and likewise take back local artists to India. Ultimately, I would like to curate an Indian Art & Crafts Fair in LA of both visual and performing artists from India. India is a brand which fascinates the world and I would like to share its culture and heritage with the world.

“Intersections” by Mike Saijo curated by Deepa Subramanian
Exhibit at the Palm Springs Modernism Show Feb 2022 curated by Deepa Subramanian

 

If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I moved into Los Angeles in 2017 and it certainly wasn’t love at first sight. But if you ask me today, I would say it is the most fascinating city that I have ever seen in the world. Now, I love LA unconditionally! I live in Santa Monica, so my favorite part is the iconic Santa Monica beach. My husband and I love to walk down the oceans avenue with its multiple upscale restaurants and bars. And of course watch the famous sunset!
LA is full of historic and monumental places. Art is huge in LA and it has some of the most prestigious galleries and museums. Personally I love the Getty experience. A brief tour of LA by road is perhaps the best way to introduce the city to a first timer covering Beverly Hills, the famous Rodeo drive, the miracle mile, West Hollywood, the iconic Sunset Blvd and back to brentwood which is the bordering neighborhood of Santa Monica.
For beach lovers, there are several interesting beach cities in LA. Of course, my favorite is Malibu.

 

Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I have had several mentors over the course of my business/personal life and I think of each one of them at every milestone that I step on. So my first shout out is to all of them individually. But I can tell you without hesitation that life has been my greatest academy and teacher all the way. So a big shoutout to life!


Website: www.galeriedearts.in www.galeriedeartsconsultancy.com

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/galeriedearts/?hl=en

Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/deepa-subramanian-15a5563/

Other: www.galeriedeartsconsultancy.com

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